Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant which has long been touted for its many health benefits. From boosting immune function to reducing the appearance of scars and blemishes, this fat-soluble vitamin plays several important roles in the body.
While most of us get enough Vitamin E through our diets, this hasn’t stopped some men from taking supplements or applying creams with Vitamin E. Should you be doing the same?
Here are three things every man should know about Vitamin E:
- Vitamin E plays an essential role in protecting the skin from damage caused by free-radicals and supporting healthy immune function.
- Vitamin E benefits are most pronounced when combined with additional vitamins.
- Vitamin E deficiencies are rare and taking too much of it can be harmful.
What Is Vitamin E?
Vitamin E is synthesized by plants and found in foods such as spinach, whole grains and nuts. It serves several important functions in the body, such as regulating the formation of red blood cells, boosting skin cell production and helping the body utilize Vitamin K.
Vitamin E comes in eight different forms, known as isomers. These isomers can be broken into two groups: tocopherol and tocotrienol.
It’s important to note that it’s uncommon for healthy men to have a Vitamin E deficiency. In fact, taking too much (over the recommended daily allowance of 15 mg) could lead to an increased risk of bleeding and hemorrhage.
Skin Health Benefits of Vitamin E for Men
While it may be rare for men to have a Vitamin E deficiency, this hasn’t stopped many of them from scooping up skin care products containing it (including our powerful firming serum). Here is why a growing number of men are incorporating Vitamin E into their daily skin care routine.
Are you starting to show signs of crow’s feet? Vitamin E protects skin cells from free radicals, which helps slow down signs of aging. This is true whether you consume foods rich in Vitamin E or apply it topically.
In fact, Vitamin E is often used in sunscreens and daily moisturizers for men due to its photoprotective properties. Research shows that alpha-tocopherol, the primary naturally occurring isomer in Vitamin E, can potentially prevent DNA cell damage from UV rays (see claim: “Topical application of alpha-tocopherol (alphaTH), the most prominent naturally occurring form of Vitamin E, inhibits ultraviolet (UV) B-induced photocarcinogenesis and DNA photodamage in C3H mice in vivo”.)
There has been a substantial amount of anecdotal evidence that Vitamin E can accelerate wound healing and potentially reduce acne scars. While there isn’t much in the way of clinical evidence on Vitamin E’s role in wound healing, research does suggest that keeping skin hydrated is key to reducing the appearance of scars (see claim: “The discovery that a moist environment actively supports the healing response when compared with a dry environment highlights the importance of water and good hydration levels for optimal healing.”)
Men who slather on lotion containing Vitamin E may be seeing a reduction in scarring simply because they are hydrating their skin regularly. Using a daily men’s moisturizer can help you achieve similar skin care benefits by smoothing out imperfections and protecting your face from sun damage.
Men tend to have oilier skin compared to women, which can lead to severe acne breakouts. If you’re wondering whether Vitamin E can help you control your breakouts, the answer is maybe.
There are some studies which suggest that a diet rich in Vitamin E (along with Vitamin A and zinc) can help reduce acne symptoms (see claim: “Our study marks the importance of diet in patients with acne. We offer supportive dietary measures with foods rich in Vitamin A and E and zinc in the acne prophylaxis and treatment.”) However, studies on how Vitamin E can benefit acne sufferers are limited and inconclusive.
With studies being so limited, Vitamin E isn’t recommended as a standalone solution to acne. Instead, men are much better off using an acne treatment system formulated for their skin.
Additional Health Benefits of Vitamin E for Men
Vitamin E can offer men more benefits apart from better skin. For example, there is some evidence to suggest that Vitamin E can improve a man’s libido, boost the immune system and even fight off diseases such as Alzheimer’s (see claim: “Vitamin E may be an effective agent in pre-emptively slowing the progression of AD…”)
However, it’s important to remember that research on the benefits of Vitamin E for men is limited. Before you take Vitamin E supplements, discuss the pros and cons with your doctor first.
Although research on the benefits of Vitamin E for men is scarce, it doesn’t hurt to use skin care products containing Vitamin E. Still, it shouldn’t be the only ingredient you focus on when shopping for skin care products.